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A cut in the rock on the Building Cragside walk.
Discover dramatic rock formations on the Building Cragside walk | © Andrew Butler
North East

Building Cragside Walk

On this short but challenging hike you'll follow a rocky and hilly route. Climbing over small boulders, following paths next to jagged cliffs, and ducking through stone tunnels are all part of the adventurous walk.

Follow the waymarkers

Yellow waymarkers will show you the way on this walk.

Total steps: 12

Total steps: 12

Start point

Dunkirk car park, grid ref: NU 07464 01106

Step 1

At Dunkirk car park, look out for the yellow starter waymarker on the other side of the Carriage Drive. Go right and walk along the single-track road. Be careful of cars behind you.

Step 2

Walk along the Carriage Drive, past Dunkirk Cottage and Cragside’s alternative exit. After a short while you will see a set of stone steps on your left with an arrowed sign pointing to the Cockcrow Stone and Cragend car park. Take these steps uphill.

Step 3

Climb the stone steps, passing giant boulders on your left. The stone path bends left then right through the trees to the next waymarker. At this junction, go right continuing the signs for the Cockcrow Stone and Cragend car park.

Step 4

Keep following the path through the trees, passing cliff faces on the left. Keep going uphill, clamber over the stone boulders, following signs for the Cockcrow Stone which you will find at the top of the hill.

Step 5

Keep following the path, at the next junction, go left and continue to follow the waymarkers. You’ll reach a clearing in the woodland with lots of bedrock, heather and rhododendron across the ground. Follow the path through here.

Step 6

At the next post, go left, following signs for the Shepherd’s Hut, that takes you under a canopy of trees. Keep following the path and bear right on to the grass track where you’ll find the Shepherd’s Hut.

Step 7

Keep following the path so the hut is on your left. At the next junction, go right, following the signpost for Cragend. There’s more weaving through rocks and roots. After a while you’ll come across a bench which is the perfect place to rest if needed. Here you’ll witness views of the treetops with the Coquet Valley hills in the distance.

Step 8

Pick up the path again, following the waymarkers downhill. At the next junction continue following signs for Cragend.

Step 9

You have reached Cragend Quarry, where stone was mined to build the House and Rock Garden. It’s a great place to tuck into a picnic on one of the nearby benches. Once you’ve rested, pick up the waymarkers again. On your left, you will see a flat keyhole shaped bench in the grass. This was the steam stonecutter. Stay on the grass path and go right, uphill. Bear right at the top of the hill and follow the undulating track through the tree, crunching through fallen leaves and pinecones underfoot.

Step 10

Turn left at the next fingerpost, following signs back to the Cockcrow Stone, back through the heathery clearing once more. At the next arrowed post go left, following the sign for Dunkirk Car Park. Shortly after you’ll come across a steep descent down to a winding path. Keep following this path downhill. Don’t be fooled by the short section up hill, you are heading back to where you started. Go right at the next waymarker.

Step 11

The path eventually goes downhill once more. Follow the route between the rocks – you’ll have to duck under some sections. At the next set of arrowed signs, ignore the sign for Dunkirk Car Park (unless your legs are weary!) and keep going straight on. Eventually you will get to some stone steps – take these downhill.

Step 12

At the next arrowed sign, go left down even more rocky steps and walk through the rock tunnel. Keep following the step downhill which brings you back out on to the Carriage Drive. Go left to finish the walk and Dunkirk Car Park.

End point

Cragend car park, grid ref: NU0824601172

Trail map

A map of the Building Cragside walk.
Follow the map to uncover unique corners of Cragside | © Anonymous Design

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Get in touch

Rothbury, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE65 7PX

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Cotswold Outdoor

We’ve partnered with Cotswold Outdoor to help everyone make the most of their time outdoors in the places we care for.

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